[JDEV] MIME, the general case.

arh14 at cornell.edu arh14 at cornell.edu
Mon Aug 9 14:37:24 CDT 1999

On Mon, 9 Aug 1999, Patrick McCuller wrote:

> 	b) As to using MIME to tranfer data, I think that's within the negotiable
> feature arena. Yes, it would be very handy to transfer some kinds of data
> using MIME - small files, email messages, miscellany, messages in different
> charsets. But we should always keep in mind that MIME was designed for
> email, and all its nasty intricacies...

Then again, MIME is not a transport in and of itself.  It is just a 
mechanism for specifying multiple-part/multiple-encoding messages.  It is 
not a communication protocol, and it doesn't, as far as I know, depend on 
its transportation layer.  So can it really be negotiated like the other 
protocols?  MIME still needs a carrier.  E.g. MIME can be carried on 
HTTP, or via SMTP.  If message format is not standardized to MIME (or 
something else), then there is still another variable layer on top of 
protocol.  On top of protocol, a message format would need to be negotiated
between the two senders.  For instance, you want to send a ZIP to 
somebody via HTTP...the reciever still needs to know what it is recieving 
(independent of the carrying protocol).

MIME probably wouldn't be useful, though, for something like 
streaming...it has no provisions for that, and that is typically 


> 	These seem to be good references for MIME information:
> http://www.oac.uci.edu/indiv/ehood/MIME/MIME.html +
> http://www.mindspring.com/~mgrand/mime.html. Anyone familiar with MIME know
> differently, or of better sites?
> Patrick

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